Zero Punctuation: Hunt Down the Freeman

Squilookle

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Bindal said:
Silentpony said:
Maybe its because I only played Half Life 1&2 like 8 years ago, but I never understood the...rapture it brings. Its an okay if slightly boring and repetitive FPS. Compared to games like Perfect Dark or even Turok, I don't understand why its some touchstone of story telling, character development and gameplay.

It'd be like if in 20 years people were like 'Wow, can you imagine what games were like before The Order: 1886? How could anyone have lived before that monumental exemplar of gameplay and graphics came to be?!'
That's because prior Half Life 1, the closest to "storytelling" in an FPS was done with the original Doom. And leveldesign as well (basically a random maze that didn't look anything like a real location outside of maybe 'a warehouse' while claiming to be a lab of some kind). And friendly NPCs in an FPS, by then, was also completely unheard of - if it was moving, it was an enemy. And if it wasn't moving, it was still an enemy or a prop.
Similar with Half Life 2, except it also became one of the best looking games of 2004 and instead of just giving us a story and an envoirement at all (which was then more common and standard, thank god) they came along with a good story and side characters. Stuff that, in regular FPS, was again rather unheard of (but common in other genres, of course).
The first Half Life revolutionised storytelling in two key areas: the first was in seamless levels. Before half life, singleplayer was always a series of levels played in quick bursts with a start point, and a victory condition (though they had by then already evolved from mazes into fascimiles of believable real world locations unlike what Bindal said). In Half Life, you began the story and it just... kept going. This lent the Black Mesa facility to take on the impression of one interconnected, massive complex, rather than a handful of sequenced arenas to progress through.

The second was that control was never taken away from the player. Not even once. Gone were big text dumps before entering a level, and cutscenes were gone too. Instead people looked at and interacted with you like you were there. These two aspects brought a higher level of immersion than had ever been seen before. It was like a movie goer who knew nothing about 'extended opening shots' going to see Gravity for the first time.

It also helped that the graphics were cutting edge at the time, and the game engine itself ran as smoothly as silk. Other games had previously had friendly and noncombatant AI in them though, Goldeneye for one, so that wasn't unheard of. It was highly uncommon for PC shooters in general at the time though.
 

Hawki

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Bindal said:
That's because prior Half Life 1, the closest to "storytelling" in an FPS was done with the original Doom.
Um, Marathon? System Shock?

I can grant that the original Half-Life's style of storytelling wasn't done before, but it's disingenuous to claim that FPS games didn't possess in-depth stories before it, however rarely.

Igor-Rowan said:
After spending a decade making such shooters even Call of Duty would laugh at,
But I like the Killzone games. :(

aegix drakan said:
Ok, that just looks hilarious. Not only did HL2 make a point of never using cutscenes that take away player control (thus this betrays the source material),
HL2 basically has cutscenes that you move around in. They're arguably even worse than cutscenes because you can't skip them.
 

Darth_Payn

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Wow. Yahtzee sounds genuinely heartbroken. It's like Valve doesn't give a tosh about it's own reputation or legacy. And Yahtzee's at his funniest when he's angry.
ewhac said:
I think Yahtzee's closing sentiments are particularly appropriate and noteworthy given that GDC is this week. (Wonder if he's visiting?)
I'm going this week, and if he's here, they're not advertising it. Could be funny to see him kicking around the Indy games, or the retrogaming exhibit.
 

Dalisclock

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Silentpony said:
Maybe its because I only played Half Life 1&2 like 8 years ago, but I never understood the...rapture it brings. Its an okay if slightly boring and repetitive FPS. Compared to games like Perfect Dark or even Turok, I don't understand why its some touchstone of story telling, character development and gameplay.

It'd be like if in 20 years people were like 'Wow, can you imagine what games were like before The Order: 1886? How could anyone have lived before that monumental exemplar of gameplay and graphics came to be?!'
It's one of those "You had to be there" moments. Half Life was very different then most FPS games that came before it, among other then that it was more "Show, not tell". It also had the advantage of having environments that actually kind of looked like people might actually live and work there and a lot of puzzles that were part of the environment, not just "Find the button to open the door" It also boasted enemies that had AI that wasn't completely brain dead(Soldiers would flank you, throw grenades at you to flush you out if you tried to hide in cover, etc).

Half life 2 wasn't quite as revolutionary, but an extremely polished version of the same type of gameplay. It built a lot off what people liked about Half Life.

Also, you're comparison doesn't work. Nobody thought "The Order: 1886" was good even when it was released. I doubt somehow it's goanna find a cult following in 20 years.....
 

Erttheking

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Jorpho said:
erttheking said:
See, shit like this is why some indie games are looking to be sold on the Switch of all things, it?s not run by someone who stopped giving a shit.
Nintendo had the nerve to allow stuff like Meme Run and The Letter on the Wii U. Are they taking better care of the Switch?
There are a couple of shit games on it, sadly, but it's recently been shown that an indie game on the Switch will do MUCH better than an indie game on Steam.


Blossom Tales is a Zelda esque indie game that sold twenty times better on the Switch than on Steam, and Jim also covered in a previous video that Steamworld Dig 2 sold "many times better than on Steam and many many times better than on other consoles." Even games that did pretty good on Steam are doing ever better on the Switch. Stardew Valley rocketed up to the top five best selling games when it was released on the E shop and it STILL hasn't left!
 

Kitsune Hunter

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It really just comes down to this, Value just doesn't care anymore, after gaining a monopoly on the PC market, they've just become complacent and lazy. It amazes me that they would just let anyone use their IP without permission and put it up on their own store front without even batting an eye lid.

And it's probably going to cost them since if most of the indie devs do finally get fed up with Value and move to the Switch, Valve will be in for a rude awakening.
 

Drathnoxis

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HazardousCube said:
I'm currently on mobile and I'm asking why did I get a 45 second video about the escapist YouTube channel back when they actually had new things to post?
Because this site hasn't had a tech team for almost 2 years and is falling apart. That happened to me around 6 months ago. It went away after, like, a month. So watch the episode on Youtube next week.
 

Aiddon_v1legacy

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Kitsune Hunter said:
It really just comes down to this, Value just doesn't care anymore, after gaining a monopoly on the PC market, they've just become complacent and lazy. It amazes me that they would just let anyone use their IP without permission and put it up on their own store front without even batting an eye lid.

And it's probably going to cost them since if most of the indie devs do finally get fed up with Value and move to the Switch, Valve will be in for a rude awakening.
Not gonna lie, I would take a kind of sick amusement in Nintendo of all companies becoming the bastion and preferred platform for indie developers and games.
 

gorfias

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Thaluikhain said:
Ouch. Never played Half Life, but...yeah, what? Why do that? Ok, cashing in, but that's not a great way of doing that.

Oh, and first post and all.
Do play Half Life if you get a chance. Dirt cheap out there. Half Life 2 is an amazing game to this date. Visually spectacular.

And genuinely scary over some of the dumbest things. Barnicles give me night mares.

But yeah? Where is 3?
 

1981

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I've forgotten all of the things I wanted games and gaming to be. One of the perks of not being a reviewer, I guess.

When it comes to overstaying your welcome... it happens to everyone. A company or individual may start as a visionary and evolve into an authority, but eventually they'll become another Altavista (those of you who are too young to know: it was a popular search engine that was eventually bogged down with unwanted features and replaced by the search engine of a company that actually developed its algorithms). It only becomes a problem if there's no one to shoot them down and take their place.
 

warmachine

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Let's face it, the concept of the game is stupid. Whilst the military recruits block-headed assholes, rather than forgiving humanitarians, soldiers regard scars as war medals and would regard invasion by aliens as a much bigger concern.